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Friday, January 21, 2022

Kings of Region 2 again as Kennedale downs Kaufman 63-36

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East meets West and the sun shines on the West …

The UIL State 4A Region 2 finals pitted the Kaufman Lions (12-2) against the Kennedale Wildcats (13-1) last Friday in Frisco. It was the two top state rated 4A teams from the DFW area with Kaufman from the eastern side and Kennedale representing the west. The Cats won this one going away 63-36. {{more: continue …}}

Cats celebrate another season highwater mark

with their second region title in two years (DFWVarsity)

Kaufman came into the game on a 10 game win streak and playing some of its best ball. Kennedale was riding high after their biggest showdown of the playoffs after beating Midlothian Heritage a week earlier 45-43.

Featured another highly rated quarterback ?
For the third game in a row, Kennedale has played a team whose top performer is their quarterback. In the Area championship with Van, it was Garrett Moseley. For the Region 2 semifinals versus Heritage, it was Landon Ledbetter. This game featured quarterback Trey Collier who was their premier player both as a passer and rusher.

Collier finished the night with a respectful 208 yards (11-20) in passing for 3 TDs and he was the team?s top rusher with 100 yards and another touchdown. Overall, the Lions had 395 yards with 208 of that through the air with one interception (halfback pass) and 187 rushing yards (3.4 yard average). Other top performers were Ceil Gasper with 144 yards in receptions and 2 touchdowns and 15 yards and 1 touchdown on the ground. Jay Gasper contributed 79 yards on the ground and 14 yards through the air.

Kennedale ran for 428 yards (12.6 yard average) and passed for just 24 (2-5). Top performers were the duo of Jaden Knowles (Sr) with 260 yards and 3 TDs and DJ Kirven (Jr) with 120 yards and 2 TDs. David Roper (Sr) contributed another 42 yards running and 16 receiving.
Cats proved unstoppable ?
Kaufman was never really able to stop Kennedale?s running game while the Cats defense but the brakes on the Lions on 6 of their first 8 possessions. These stops killed any real chance the Kaufman had to make a game of it. Overall, Kaufman scored on 4 of 13 possession while Kennedale scored on 7 of their 10 offensive possessions.
Kennedale secret weapon ?

Senior Larry Brooks with 16 tackles,

fumble recovery return and a punt return for TDs (File

photo:Staci Otts)

Larry Brooks (Sr) had a night to remember. As a defensive back, he led the team in tackles with 16 with 3 of those for losses. He recovered a fumble and returned it for 42 yards and a touchdown. As a return specialist, Brooks returned one punt for 47 yards for a touchdown and had a second touchdown called back on a penalty.

In fact, it was the play of the special teams that scored the first 3 of 4 touchdowns scored by Kennedale. Besides the two scored by Brooks, another was scored when an errant punt attempt by Kaufman was recovered in the end-zone by the Cats.
Referees kept busy ?
It was a very unusual game for the Cats in that two Kennedale players were actually ejected from the game. Kaufman had one ejection. Both teams combined for 18 penalties and 185 yards. Kennedale had 11 penalties with 113 yards assessed. (Kennedale averages 6 penalties per game that are of the 5 yard to 10 yard variety).
Game story ?
First Quarter
  • Score: The Cats came out scoring first on a Larry Brooks fumble recovery on the third play of the game at the Kaufman 44 that he returned for a touchdown. The extra point kick failed but the Cats were up 6-0.
  • Score: Kaufman?s second possession was successful on an 81 yard, 9 play drive that mixed the run and the pass and was capped by a 27 yard pass play. The extra point was good and Kennedale was down 7-6 at 7:13 in Q1.
  • Score: Kennedale responded with a two play drive that covered 70 yards highlighted by a 68 yard touchdown run by Jaden Knowles at 6:21 in Q1. Score was back up at 13-7.
  • Score: Kaufman scored on their third possession with a 11 play drive that covered 75 yards with a final 8 yard run by Trey Collier. Kick was good and Kaufman was up again 14-13 at 1:31 in Q1
Second Quarter
  • Punt: Kennedale third possession started on the Kennedale 30 and ended 10 plays later with a punt on at the Cats 47. Kennedale quarterback went out injured during the drive and Kennedale lost 15 yards on two penalties and a 2 yards loss on a recovered fumble.
  • Punt: Kaufman met with little success on the fourth possession going three and out with a punt at the forced to punt on a 4 and 12 at their 13.
  • Score: Kennedale?s Larry Brooks returned Kaufman?s punt 44 yards for his second touchdown of the game. A 2 yard run by Ali Latifi (Sr) was good for two points and Kennedale was up 21-14 at 5:39 in Q2 and would never relinquish the lead again.
  • Fumble: Kaufman again struggles on their 5th possession as the Cats defense makes their 3rd stop of the game forcing a punt attempt on a 4th and 4 at Kaufman 30. The snap sailed over the head of the punter.

#45 Marlete Joyner recovered a muffed

Kaufman punt attempt in the endzone for a Kennedale touchdown (File

photo:Staci Otts)

  • Score: Kennedale?s Marlete Joyner recovered the Kaufman ball in the endzone for a touchdown. With a Tiero PAT, the Cats led 28-14 with 3:36 in Q2.
  • Punt: Kaufman was stopped for the third straight time going three and out and punting on a 4th and 10 at their 25. Kaufman netted 0 yards on the series.
  • Score: Kennedale chewed up the clock on an 8 play, 62 yard drive helped by a 15 yard Kaufman penalty and capped by an 18 yard Jaden Knowles TD run. David Roper had a 16 yard catch on the drive but the the rest of the yardage was made by Knowles. Kennedale put their stamp on the first half with a score of 35-14 after a Tiero PAT kick with 20 seconds left in Q2.
  • Time expired: Kaufman ran two plays starting from their 25 and helped by a 15 yard penalty on the Cats ran of time on their 48 on an incomplete pass.
Third Quarter
  • Ball over on downs: Kaufman had an excellent chance to score with dead ball penalties against the Cats to end the half, Kaufman tried an onside kick and recovered the ball on the Kennedale 29. The Cats defense stepped up however and again stopped Kaufman on a 4th and 5 attempt at the Kennedale 24.
  • Fumble: Kennedale from their 24 ran four plays and fumbled on the Kennedale 44. DJ Kirven had a 12 yard run to help the Cats move the ball on that drive.
  • Interception: Kaufman with another excellent chance to score moved the ball to the Kennedale 33 on five plays but a halfback pass by Jay Gaspers was intercepted by Kennedale?s JD Coffey (Fr) at the Kennedale 27, making it 6 straight stops by the Cats’ defense.
  • Score: Kennedale added more points on the board off a 5 play drive capped by a 58 yard touchdown run by DJ Kirven, making the score 42-14 with a Tiero PAT kick at the 4:04 mark in Q3.
  • Score: Kaufman scored their first touchdown since the 1st quarter on a 7 play 75 yard drive capped by a Collier 45 TD pass to Cecil Gasper. Kick was good and the score was 42-21 at 2:05 in Q3 with Kennedale on top.
  • Score: Kennedale responds with a 5 play 75 yard drive kick-started by a 46 yard run by Jaden Knowles and capped by a 3 yard run by JD Kirven. The Tiero kick was good and Kennedale was up 49-21 with 21 seconds in Q3.
Fourth Quarter
  • Score: Kaufman comes back with a 77 yard 8 play drive highlighted by Collier passes of 25, 8, 28 and 7 along with a 15 yard Kennedale penalty. With 10:22 in the game, the score was 49-28 Kennedale.
  • Score: Just twelve seconds later, Kennedale?s Jaden Knowles streaks up the middle of the playing field on the first play of the Cat?s next possession for 75 yards and a Kennedale touchdown. Tiero?s kick was good and the score is 56-28 at the 10:09 mark in Q4.
  • Ball over on downs: Kaufman starting at their 30 can go nowhere and in desperation attempted a 4th and 2 at the Kaufman 32 with a Cats stop.
  • Score: Kennedale just two plays later, scored on a David Roper 42 yards rushing attempt, scoring Kennedale’s final touchdown of the game. Score after Tiero kick was 63-28 with 8:35 in the game.
  • Score: Kaufman chews up the clock on a 64 yard, 10 play drive that end with a 9 yard TD run by Cecil Gasper and a Collier two point pass to William Kerr. Score was 63-36 with just 2:51 left in the game.
  • Punt: Kennedale stretches out a 3 and out and punts with just 43 seconds on the clock. Tiero?s punt goes 26 yards to the Kaufman 21.
  • Time expired: Kaufman was able to run two plays for 18 yards to the Kaufman 39 before the game ends with the score 63-36 Kennedale.

Wildcat traditional after game kneel down at mid-field with Coach Barrett (KHS/AV)

Kennedale enters the 5th round of the UIL football playoffs this week playing Stephenville for the chance to make the UIL championships next week. 2017 UIL Conference 4A Divison I Playoff Bracket

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